Thursday, 24 November 2011

Brussel sprouts with olive pesto


   200g brussel sprouts, basil oil, 30g basil, 30g kamalata 

 olives,1/2 clove garlic, 30g parmigiano.
Serves: 4 Preparation: 20 minutes

Brussel sprouts came into season yesterday and I am determined to bring sexy back to these underrated teeny cabbages. Growing up most of us associate Christmas lunch with being forced to eat soggy, bitter sprouts but done well, sprouts can be an indulgent treat. Genovese olive pesto is one of my favourite flavour combinations and I think it's just savoury enough to bring out the natural sweet, fresh taste of sprouts.

1) Genovese style pesto is incredibly fine and involves pulverising the basil literally one leaf at a time in your mortar and pestle - if you don't have the patience then you could use a blender but nothing will release the basil juice and create that silky Genovese texture like the traditional method. 

2) Once the basil is crushed to a fine pulp, add finely diced kamalata olives, minced garlic and parmeggian. Add a glug of basil oil until it has reached the desired consistency.

3) Brussel sprouts take 6 minutes to cook - drop them into a pan of salted, boiling water, checking first to discard any which smell bitter and peeling off any leaves which look old or scarred.

4) Once cooked, strain the sprouts and add back into the hot pan with a few spoonfuls of the pesto. Stir through and serve.

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